A centuries-old Hindu temple in Pakistan now used as toilet for tourists
The dilapidated Shri Varun Dev Mandir in Pakistan lies in its ruins only to be used by tourists to the nearby Manora beach as toilets.
Showcasing a great loophole in the promises of Pakistan government regarding the upkeep of Hindu temples and other sites of religious importance, there lies the dilapidated Shri Varun Dev Mandir in Manora, Pakistan.
The temple’s caretaker has written to the concerned authorities for preserving the historical site, but to no avail.
According to caretaker Jivraj, he had written to the Manora Cantonment Board (MCB) for the record of the temple’s ownership. However, he was told there was no record as such. Furthermore, MCB said that since the temple falls under the jurisdiction of the country’s Navy, there was nothing that MCB could do.
Now, the decadent structures of the temple lies in its ruins only to be used by tourists to the nearby Manora beach as toilets.
The exact year of the temple’s construction or foundation is not known but it is widely believed that the current structure was renovated in around 1917–18.
Legends say that a sailor named Bhojomal Nancy Bhatia discovered the Manora Island in the sixteenth century. He bought the island from Khan of Kalat. Jivraj added that Bhatia built the temple here with a lot of craft.
Today, the temple is in a dilapidated state as humid winds are eating into the structure and the rich carvings on the walls of the temple are slowly eroding. At present, the building is not used for worship and the last ritual was held in the 1950s.
This is in stark contrast to India (once again) – a place which houses more Muslims than in Pakistan and gives full freedom of jurisdiction to the mosques and respects the religious sentiments of the minorities.